Ensto’s electric vehicle charging solutions integrated into a shopping centre’s building system

The property company Sello and Siemens built a smart energy system for Finland’s second largest shopping centre. The Sello shopping centre also houses a virtual power plant developed and maintained by Siemens. Ensto’s electric vehicle charging solutions were integrated into Sello’s building system.

The Sello shopping centre, located in Espoo, invests in energy-efficiency and strives to reduce its carbon footprint. The eco-friendly shopping centre has been awarded the EU’s Energy Service Award in recognition of its work to promote energy-efficiency and the property has also been granted the LEED Platinum certificate for operations and maintenance. In 2015, Sello became Europe’s first shopping centre to be granted this certification. Based on digital technology, Sello’s smart energy management system is at the core of its virtual power plant solution. Finland’s Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment granted the virtual power plant project funding allocated for its key energy projects.

A virtual power plant provides additional energy-efficiency

The operations of the virtual power plant are controlled by AI. The smart energy management system anticipates changes in circumstances and adjusts consumption rapidly to meet the needs of the electricity network. The complex is combined into a virtual eco-system via a smart energy platform, which offers new ways to create savings, including increased efficiency, reduced emissions, the elimination of maintenance backlog, and new revenue and business models. Developed and maintained by Siemens, the system consists of a microgrid built using Sello’s building technology, 750 kWp solar panel system, a smart LED lighting solution and about 2 MW of electricity storage. With the system, the shopping centre’s energy consumption and its purchase from external sources can be optimized automatically. The entire property’s electricity consumption is controlled in a centralised manner. When the electric vehicle charging points are under heavy use, the property’s energy consumption is momentarily reduced elsewhere. This helps maintain energy consumption within set limits, resulting in cost reductions.

Ensto’s charging stations are part of the charging system supplied by Siemens. Anssi Laaksonen from Siemens, who was responsible for the operations of the virtual power plant, explains that the electric vehicle charging infrastructure is part of Sello’s building system. ‘A global charging platform is now also available in Finland, with Sello as the frontrunner in this area. With this project, the groundwork has now been done and Ensto’s charging devices are configured into the platform. Because the devices are compatible with the back-end system, more of them can be added afterwards without any restrictions and they can also be delivered anywhere in the world,’ says Laaksonen.

 ‘I have followed Ensto’s work to develop its electric vehicle charging stations since 2012. It was easy to enter into collaboration with an already-familiar company. The devices are very advanced and I can rest easy in the knowledge that they work well and also adjust to future needs. Their strengths include local energy measurement, standard monitoring and excellent value for money. The package functions as we agreed, and we can also intensify our collaboration,’ explains Laaksonen, from Siemens.

Ensto Pro, a smart charging solution that is ideal for public properties

Ensto delivered 24 charging points for electric vehicles to the Sello shopping centre. Ensto Pro was selected as the solution for Sello because of its robust design and high-capacity charging operations of up to 2x22kW. A fee is charged for using the electric vehicle charging stations at Sello, with the Ecariot application used for payments.

Ensto Pro can be integrated into various systems and it enables data transfer to the back-end system. Thanks to its OCPP 1.6 and smart load management system, Ensto Pro is the most popular smart charging station available on the market. Because its components are easily accessible behind a cover with hinges, it is easy to maintain and durable in design. Ensto Pro is a smart charging station for public and semi-public applications – a perfect solution from the perspective of users, owners and operators.

  • Telecommunication connection: 4G and Ethernet
  • Data transfer to the back-end system
  • Dynamic load control
  • Low lifecycle costs
  • High-quality, robust steel structure
  • Rapid charging (2x22 kW, type 2)
  • In-built type A RCD and miniature circuit breaker (MCB)
  • Recommended products: EVF200W-BSC: Ethernet, MID-certified energy meter

Selected as Finland’s best shopping centre in 2019, Sello offers much more than shopping opportunities – its goal is to be an urban hub rather than just a shopping centre. It also houses a concert hall, a library, hypermarkets and a variety of leisure services. The shopping centre offers 102,000 square metres of commercial space for rent. The complex with almost 170 businesses and service providers receives 24 million visitors a year. Read more about Sello.

Read more about the virtual power plant developed by Siemens.

With Ensto, you can charge your electric vehicle wherever you are. Ensto offers electric vehicle charging solutions for homes, housing companies and workplaces – the places you go to every day. Read more about Ensto’s durable and smart electric vehicle charging solutions.